C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


Your noblest natures are most credulous.


Quick believers need broad shoulders.

George Herbert.

Credulity thinks others short-sighted.

Abbé Guerguil.

The only disadvantage of an honest heart is credulity.

Sir P. Sidney.

You believe that easily which you hope for earnestly.


It is as wise to moderate our belief as our desires.


We believe easily what we fear or what we desire.

La Fontaine.

When credulity comes from the heart it does no harm to the intellect.


Credulity is perhaps a weakness almost inseparable from eminently truthful characters.


I wish I was as sure of anything as Macaulay is of everything.

William Windham.

I cannot spare the luxury of believing that all things beautiful are what they seem.


  • Generous souls
  • Are still most subject to credulity.
  • Davenant.

    We believe at once in evil; we only believe in good upon reflection. Is not this sad?

    Madame Deluzy.

    Ignorant people are to be caught by the ears as one catches a pot by the handle.

    From the French.

    Men are most apt to believe what they least understand; and through the lust of human wit obscure things are more easily credited.


    Women are sometimes drawn in to believe against probability by the unwillingness they have to doubt their own merit.


    O credulity, thou hast as many ears as fame has tongues, open to every sound of truth as of falsehood.


    Let us believe neither half of the good people tell us of ourselves, nor half the evil they say of others.

    J. Petit-Senn.

    The incredulous are the most credulous. They believe the miracles of Vespasian that they may not believe those of Moses.


    The more gross the fraud, the more glibly will it go down, and the more greedily will it be swallowed, since folly will always find faith wherever impostors will find impudence.


    To be deceived by our enemies and betrayed by our friends is not to be borne; yet are we often content to be served so by ourselves.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    The greatest and saddest defect is not credulity, but an habitual forgetfulness that our science is ignorance.


    The general goodness which is nourished in noble hearts makes every one think that strength of virtue to be in another whereof they find assured foundation in themselves.

    Sir P. Sidney.

    Superstition is certainly not the characteristic of this age. Yet some men are bigoted in politics who are infidels in religion. Ridiculous credulity!


    It is a curious paradox that precisely in proportion to our own intellectual weakness will be our credulity as to those mysterious powers assumed by others.


    Credulity is the common failing of inexperienced virtue, and he who is spontaneously suspicious may be justly charged with radical corruption.


    What believer sees a disturbing omission or infelicity? The text, whether of prophet or of poet, expands for whatever we can put into it; and even his bad grammar is sublime.

    George Eliot.

    A man must have a good deal of vanity who believes, and a good deal of boldness who affirms, that all the doctrines he holds are true, and all he rejects are false.


    In all places, and in all times, those religionists who have believed too much have been more inclined to violence and persecution than those who have believed too little.


    What the light of your mind, which is the direct inspiration of the Almighty, pronounces incredible, that, in God’s name, leave uncredited. At your peril do not try believing that!


    We all know that a lie needs no other grounds than the invention of the liar; and to take for granted as truth all that is alleged against the fame of others is a species of credulity that men would blush at on any other subject.

    Jane Porter.

  • O credulity,
  • Security’s blind nurse, the dream of fools,
  • The drunkard’s ape, that feeling for his way
  • Ev’n when he thinks, in his deluded sense
  • To snatch at safety, falls without defence.
  • Mason.

  • Blessed credulity, thou great great god of error,
  • Thou art the strong foundation of huge wrongs,
  • To thee give I my vows and sacrifice;
  • By thee, great deity, he doth believe
  • Falsehoods, that falsehood’s self could not invent;
  • And from that misbelief doth draw a course
  • T’ overwhelm e’en virtue, truth and sanctity.
  • Let him go on, blest stars, ’tis meet he fall,
  • Whose blindfold judgment hath no guide at all.
  • Machen.

    It is a curious paradox that precisely in proportion to our own intellectual weakness will be our credulity, to those mysterious powers assumed by others; and in those regions of darkness and ignorance where man cannot effect even those things that are within the power of man, there we shall ever find that a blind belief in feats that are far beyond those powers has taken the deepest root in the minds of the deceived, and produced the richest harvest to the knavery of the deceiver.


    Fear, if it be not immoderate, puts a guard about us that does watch and defend us; but credulity keeps us naked, and lays us open to all the sly assaults of ill-intending men: it was a virtue when man was in his innocence; but since his fall, it abuses those that own it.